Halloween greetings! Here is some basic vocabulary and Halloween trivia you absolutely need to know for all your pagan partying this weekend.
‘Jack o’ lantern’ => in this country you’ll see them made from pumpkins. Jack o’ lanterns are believed to have originated in Ireland and the Scottish Highlands during the 19th century. They were made from large turnips as well.
‘Ghoul’ => an evil demon. In Arabic legend it’s a creature that eats both stolen corpses and children. You’ll hear the word ‘ghoul’ thrown around loosely (especially after a few drinks) to also mean ‘monster’, ‘fiend’ and ‘goblin’.
‘Spooky’ => used to describe places or situations where ghosts could be present. Haunted houses are definitely spooky. ‘Eerie’ and ‘creepy’ are good synonyms.
Here’s a photo of a spooky place I just visited upstate. It’s what’s left of the old Northgate mansion in Cold Spring. That woman in the photo is not a ghoul, just a very sweet model doing a photo shoot. It’s actually a nice place to go hiking, too.
‘Trick or treat!’ => what little kids in costumes scream at you when you open your door. You cannot give them a trick or you’ll be arrested. Stick with sugar-filled candy bars.
‘Werewolf‘ => a man who becomes a wolf at night. Literally.
Do you want to know how to become a werewolf? Here are some tried-and-true methods:
Remove your clothes and put on a belt made of wolfskin (seems like an easy enough method)
Rub your body with a magic salve (Duane Reade really should carry this)
Drink rainwater out of the footprint of a wolf (Good luck!)
Sleep outside on a summer night with the moon shining on your face. It has to be on a Wednesday or Friday and I’m not sure which one.